Throughout college and law school, I had a love affair with hummus. I would eat hummus and pita as a snack nearly every day in college, I would go through several containers of hummus every week, and I would even make hummus and cheese sandwiches in law school. This odd sandwich combo came about after I had the misfortune of smelling a piece of very rotten turkey deli meat sitting in my fridge. After that waft of rotting flesh invaded my nostrils, I vowed never to eat deli meat again. Well, first, I vomited into my own mouth, then I made the vow. Unfortunately, as I’ve ascended into my 20s, my bowels have become hostile enemy territory for legumes such as the humble chickpea. Don’t get me wrong, I still go to town on hummus whenever it’s served at restaurants or parties, but I try not to buy it at the grocery store. It’s the least I can do for my bowels.
In recent years, I’ve seen faux versions of hummus that use vegetables instead of chickpeas. There’s carrot hummus, sweet potato hummus, zucchini hummus, and most recently, beet hummus has become very popular.
If eating chickpeas doesn’t cause a party in your pants, by all means, try making a beet-flavored hummus that still uses traditional chickpeas as the base and beets just as a flavoring. Here’s a beautiful recipe for beet-flavored hummus from the Minimalist Baker. But, if your booty doesn’t agree with beans, or you’re just looking for a new recipe, try out my beet hummus, which is made with roasted beets, tahini, walnuts, garlic, lemon, and olive oil. It's delicious spread onto toast or pita bread or used as dip for crudité. Lately, I've been slathering it on toast and topping it off with avocado slices, a drizzle of tahini, a squeeze of lemon juice, and sea salt.
One word of caution: beets stain everything bright pink. I wear surgical gloves when I handle beets and you should too. Doing so might make you feel like a very methodical serial killer, but your pristinely clean fingernails will thank you.
Paleo, Vegan, Gluten-Free
- 1 pound of beets
- 1/4 cup of tahini
- 2 tablespoons of walnuts
- 2 garlic cloves
- 2 tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 lemon: zest of entire lemon and juice of half
- 1/2 teaspoon of cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon of coriander
- 3/4 teaspoon of kosher salt
- Freshly cracked black pepper
- Extra virgin olive oil and sesame seeds for serving
- Preheat oven to 400 °F. Trim tops off of beets. Wrap each beet in aluminum foil and place on a baking sheet. Roast for 45-60 minutes until beets are easily pricked with a fork. Unwrap the beets and allow to cool. Once cooled, slip the peels off of the beets and roughly chop.
- Add beets and remaining ingredients to a food processor and blend until thoroughly mixed and the texture is smooth yet slightly chunky. Drizzle with extra virgin olive oil and top with sesame seeds.
- Serve with pita bread, on toast, or with crudité.